Category Archive for: ‘Budgeting’

Financial Guidance for Millennials and Everyone Else

Graduation Pig

There’s a big concern today that young adults aren’t saving money and their debt is increasing.  Financial Guidance has not been a mainstream priority.   Schools are not readily introducing financial literacy into classrooms and parents are finding it difficult to introduce money management skills into a world that is now dealing with computerized money. (Debit cards, credit cards, on-line …

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Teaching Children About Money

Dads Wallet

I’m concerned about the number of children who are not being taught money management by their parents or our school system. I believe that teaching children about money and finance should be as basic as discussions about healthy eating. A good resource for parents is a financial blog published by Tamar Satov called “Raising Money-Smart Kids” at  She says …

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Tips to Avoid Christmas Overspending

Santa Credit Card

As we count down the days in eager anticipation of the Christmas festive season, thoughts of great food, presents, parties and good fellowship dance in our heads. Here are some practical tips to help prevent overspending on your Christmas budget, and that inevitable credit card or overdraft statement shock in the New Year. Don’t wait until the last minute: It’s …

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Are you living paycheque to paycheque?

Empty Pockets1

A recent survey taken of thousands of Canadian employees found that just over half would have difficulty paying their monthly bills if their paycheques were delayed by just a week. The same survey highlighted that things are getting tougher for many working Canadians, as those who are living paycheque to paycheque are saving less than they should be. This is …

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Cash Flow Problems?

Stressed Lady1

In today’s hectic world, I’m finding a concern across all age and income levels is managing day-to-day cash flow. Many Canadians are running out of money before running out of month, and are making up the difference with lines of credit, credit cards and charge accounts. Banks, credit card, and finance companies love to collect the incredible amount of interest …

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When It Comes To Debt, Age Matters

Grandpa With Grandson1

There is a wide variety of attitudes about debt management and one thing is certain — when it comes to debt, age matters. It’s also evident that “debt” means different things to different people. Manulife Bank’s latest Homeowner Debt Survey reveals a perfect example of how different generations categorize their mortgage compared to debt: (This finding suggests a shift in …

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Financial Advisor Checklist

In Boardroom2

We strive to keep up-to-date with client portfolios throughout the year, which involves making the effort to discover changing priorities, goals, and any potential financial concerns.  Ideally, this conversation is a two-way street and we encourage our clients to ask questions as well.  The next time you meet with your advisor, use this financial advisor checklist to help facilitate these …

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Debt Is a Low Priority

Drowning Piggy

For many Canadians, debt is a low priority and tends to viewed simply as monthly payments. Interest rates have been low for so long they don’t realize what will happen when rates start rising.  Many are either too young or have forgotten the 19% rates in the 80’s, where the majority of people’s payments went to pay interest on their …

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5 Simple Rules to Financial Success

Many Pigs

I’ve just finished reading Preet Banerjee’s new book “Stop Over-Thinking Your Money.”  I was very impressed with these simple and very practical guidelines to achieving financial success.  They aren’t easy, but they can change your life and future financial situation for the better. Rule #1 – Disaster Proof Your Life: When we are young and healthy we think we’re bullet …

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You’re Richer Than You Think – Not!


Every time I see the, “You’re richer than you think” ad I get mad, because it’s a blatant misstatement of the financial situation of the average Canadian with $28,000 in consumer debt.  It’s ironic that, right after the Christmas spending binge, the financial services industry launches ads telling us we’re richer than we think, and we need to take on …

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Tis the Season For Holiday Scams!

Pig With Garland

As we approach the Christmas holiday shopping frenzy, Canadians are worried about more than blowing their budgets this season.  They are also anxious about identity theft as shoppers at busy malls can have their wallets stolen, leading to potential mail theft and cyber scams.  After all, ’tis the season for holiday scams. A recent Google survey found that many Canadians …

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Budgeting Tips for Generation Y


When budgeting, it’s essential to manage and understand your monthly cash flow when trying to gain control of where your money is going and ultimately reach your financial goals. It’s tough to start, but eventually becomes easier and habitual.  With this in mind, here are three budgeting tips for Generation Y and their parents. Now more than 12 million strong and …

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Why Financial Advice Is More Important Than Ever

important advice

Having just returned from a conference for professional financial advisors at the Banff School of Fine Arts, I was struck at the relevance of many of the speaker’s topics.   One speaker resonated with me – Preet Banerjee, is a television host with the Oprah Winfrey Network, a columnist at The Globe and Mail, a W Network money expert and a …

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Preet Banerjee Presented at Banff School

Preet Banerjee and debt

Just returned from a rejuvenating time at ADVOCIS‘ 2013 Banff School where Prett Banerjee presented. At the risk of slighting the many knowledgeable speakers and highlights, I wanted to capture at least one of them before getting lost in the day-to-day flurry of what I hesitate to call, “work.” Preet Banerjee spoke about DEBT as a four-letter-word that has since …

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Highly-Indebted Canadians

bloomberg Cdn Household Debt

  Among other interesting (and scary) statistics, MoneySense magazine made reference to this Bloomberg article about the dire straits of highly-indebted Canadians.  Their Chart Of The Day illustrates the path that Canadians are walking…   Looking at these figures one would think Canadians are accumulating debt at an alarming rate,” said Michael Hsu, vice president at Ipsos in Toronto. Still, …

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A Car-Buying Strategy worth $360,000


The original post can be found here The first and forgotten half of personal finance is how to be a better consumer.  Over 90% of any book store’s financial planning section focuses on investing. Since everyone spends money, everyone can benefit from learning how to be a better consumer, regardless of their income or age. One of the most powerful …

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Conquering the Debt Mountain

Man In Water1

Surprisingly, many people reaching middle age are finding themselves in the precarious position of conquering the debt mountain. In a recent bank survey, here’s what 50-year-olds said their top goals are: The average debt for Canadians in this group is $108,000 and 25% of these still owe between $100,000 and $250,000.  This means that many are struggling to pay down …

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Understanding Spending Trade-Offs

Save Vs Spend1

Opportunity lost When you buy something, do you ever think about the lost future opportunity that this purchase has cost you?  We usually just save what’s left over, if any.  But it’s important in understanding spending trade-offs — by spending a little now, we limit our ability to purchase or invest in better things in the future.  By controlling our …

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Developing A Budget

Pig And Calculator1

When Developing a Budget, You First Need to Understand Where All Your Money’s Going! There is nothing wrong spending money; why else do we all work so hard to earn it? The two keys are: Harnessing the power of these keys leads us to strategic spending, a process that ensures we are managing our spending rather than our spending managing …

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Are You Sitting On A Debt Time Bomb?

Time Bomb1

Many families today are carrying large amounts of debt and little or no rainy day savings.  They may have small amounts of money in RRSPs, but next to nothing saved for potential emergencies.  This describes a classic “debt time bomb” waiting for the right fuse. With the cost of living today and high debt, it’s common that both parents are …

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